Washington: Smartphones and tablets can make for sleep-disrupting bedfellows and one cause is believed to be the bright light-emitting diodes that allow the use of mobile devices in dimly lit rooms.
The light exposure can interfere with melatonin, a hormone that helps control the natural sleep-wake cycle.
But there may be a way to check your mobile device in bed and still get a good night’s sleep.
A Mayo Clinic study suggests that dimming the smartphone or tablet brightness settings and holding the device at least 14 inches from your face while using it will reduce its potential to interfere with melatonin and impede sleep.
“In the old days people would go to bed and read a book. Well, much more commonly people go to bed and they have their tablet on which they read a book or they read a newspaper or they’re looking at material. The problem is it’s a lit device, and how problematic is the light source from the mobile device?” co-author Lois Krahn, M.D., a psychiatrist and sleep expert at Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale, Arizona said.
“We found that only at the highest setting was the light over a conservative threshold that might affect melatonin levels. If it’s at the mid setting or at a low setting it’s bright enough to use,” she said.
First Published: Tuesday, June 4, 2013, 14:04